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  1. Hi guys. I’m here to share my recent experience with RoyalUp, a program that allows people with existing reservations to bid for an upgrade to a higher room category. The reason why I’m sharing my experience is because prior to and after the upgrade, I had a ton of questions that I’ve been trying to look for answers all over the internet but couldn’t find any. Hence, I’d like to share my experience with everyone and hopefully it can give some answers to my fellow cruisers! A brief introduction: (or skip to the end for the answers to the “FAQs”) I’ve booked a last minute 4-night sailing onboard Quantum of the Seas in Singapore, also known as Cruise to Nowhere. It is basically a hospitality restarting program by the Singapore government with no ports of call. Strict restrictions are also put in place for the safety of the guests. I’ve booked a Junior Suite (J4) for me and my wife. The price displayed on the RC’s booking website was SGD 1399pp for 4-nights before pre-paid gratuities and port taxes. There wasn’t any other suite options left for booking, which I presumed was fully booked. Almost immediately after completing the reservation transaction, I received the RoyalUP email, and invited me to place a bid to a higher room category. Even though I could clearly see that none of the higher suite categories were available for booking, I still decided to give it a try at bidding for RoyalUp. Long story short, I placed bids on all categories, ranging from Grand Suite to Royal Loft Suite and kind of forgot about the whole RoyalUp thing. Until around 24 hours before the sailing, I received an email saying that my bid for a Grand Loft Suite was successful. My bid amount was SGD 1210 per person hence SGD 2420 was charged to my credit card on file immediately. In general, I paid about $2710 per person ($1399 (JS) +$1210 (RoyalUp) +$100 taxes and pre-paid gratuities) I’ve checked the price of a Grand Loft Suite on a different sailing date, and it cost around SGD 5400 per person and before taxes. Which means, I’ve gotten nearly a 50% off the original price. From Junior Suite to Grand Loft Suite is a big jump. In terms of Royal Suite class, it was upgraded from Sea Class to Star Class. At this point, I was very excited! But at the same time, I have a lot questions that needs answers to. To be honest, even with a “huge discount”, SGD 2710 (SGD 5k+ for 2 people) is almost double the original budget hence to me, it is still a lot of money to fork out for a 4-day vacation. As we know, Grand Loft Suite is a Star Class suite and it is practically All-Inclusive such as free specialty dining, deluxe beverage package, internet package etc and it comes with a Royal Genie. So naturally, some questions flashes through my mind, and since it was an upgrade through RoyalUP: “Am I going to get a Royal Genie as well?” “Will I be treated differently in terms of services than those guests who paid the original price?” “How about the things I’ve pre-paid on Cruise Planner such as beverage package and internet package since my suite already includes all those packages?” I’ve tried searching for answers on the internet but I couldn’t find any. However, after I’ve completed my sailing, I kind of gotten all the answers I needed. So now, I’m going share them with you guys. My very own set of FAQs: Q: Am I going to get Royal Genie as well? A: Yes! Even though I gotten the upgrade 1 day before the sailing, the Royal Genie got in touch with me via WhatsApp on the morning of the sailing and she already took the liberty to arrange all the activities for us! She already pre-booked all the shows, specialty dinning and some activities such as iFly and Flow Rider. And she was extremely flexible and accommodating on all our requests to change meal timings, shows timings. All you need to do is just let her know your preference and leave everything to her. Q: Will I be treated differently in terms of services compared to those guests who paid the original price? A: Not at all. From my observations, only 2 groups of service crews knew you are an “upgrader”. They are the Royal Genie, and the cruise terminal staff. Usually, Genie will contact you 1 month before your sailing to get to know you better. However, she does know that you are an upgrader since she contacted you just 1 day before the sailing, not the usual 1 month. As for the cruise terminal staff, our information was given to them by the cruise line at the very last minute hence our information was “hand-written” on their paper. They did “congratulate” us on the successful upgrade by the Cruise Line which is why I knew they knew we were an upgrader. Nevertheless, they escorted from the moment we reached the terminal until being handed over to the Royal Genie. Very good service rendered. Q: How about the things I’ve pre-paid on Cruise Planner such as beverage package and internet package since my suite already includes all those packages A: They will be refunded to you and the Royal Genie made sure of that. It will be under “refundable” onboard credit and you can requested to get them in cash on the last night of the cruise. Otherwise, it will be refunded to your credit card. Q: How about my SeaPass card? Will I be recognized as a Star-Class guest? A: You will be identified as a Star Class guest on your SeaPass card, not the original room category that you were booked on. Q: Do I get the same perks and benefit listed under Star-Class suite even though I’m an upgrader? A: Yes! Complementary Dining Package, Beverage package, internet package, complementary mini-bar for the whole cruise with replenishment daily, complementary room-service, complementary laundry (I don’t think they set a limit on the quantity of clothes). For Izumi, there is no limit in terms of the amount you can order. If you have a Ultimate Dining Package, I believe per meal you will get USD35 credit per person for Izumi as it is based on A-la-carte pricing. But for Star-Class, there is no limit on that. The wait staff made it known to you before you order. Q: How about those chargeable activities? A: For our sailing, the chargeable activities are iFly (~$40) and Northstar (~$20) and strictly by reservation only. However, with the help of our Genie, reservation was done before hand. There is no charges for Star-Class guest for these activities. However, you are only entitled to 1 free session for each of these 2 activities. If you would like to go for a second-time, you will have to pay the charges. All other FAQs regarding Star-Class: Q: Can Royal Genie fulfill all your requests? A: Yes and No. I’d emphasize that your request must be reasonable. If you would like to change your dinner venue to another restaurant at the very last minute, you can kindly check with her. Most of the times it can be fulfilled. However, if the restaurant is full, she might suggest to change to an earlier or a later time for you. I’m not sure what kind of magic they have, but I’m definitely against them pulling out other guests from their original dining timing just to slot you in. Firstly, you are putting Genie in a difficult position, secondly, you are causing unhappiness to the affected guests. So I’d suggest to give the Genie some leeway. Do not force you request onto them. If it can be done in a gentle way, go ahead. If not, please do not force or blame them. Q: Do I need to tip the Royal Genie? A: Absolutely. They are not a receiver of the automatically gratuity system on board. Hence, the tips relies solely on you. Royal Genie is not just a regular butler, they are there to learn about you and make arrangements for you which you didn’t even think of. My wife somehow mentioned to the Genie that this is our 2nd anniversary trip when we were casually chatting. (but did not mention in details). The Genie caught it and arranged for a surprise decoration and cake in the room for us. My wife and I were surprised as initially, we really can’t figure out how she knew about our anniversary. It is only when we tried to recall every single thing we said to the Genie, and realized that it must have slipped out of our mouth at certain point. Their attention to details are just simply unbelievable. Hope this post is useful for whoever is looking for the same answers as I did. Happy cruising!
    38 points
  2. She tested positive. End of story. The mix up that resulted in her getting a bracelet did not cause her to become infected. She knows her vaccination status. She chose to play like she was vaccinated using the bracelet to go into areas she knows she didn't belong. The signs don't say "purple bracelets only", the signs read "Vaccinated Guest Area". She knew she was breaking the rules. Got a free ride home in a private jet. Hard to complain about that. Mixups are going to happen. No system will ever be perfect. She needs to take accountability for her actions rather than trying to cast shade on the cruise industry.
    28 points
  3. I hope not to stir up any trouble here but… I will NEVER take the daily gratuity charge off. The employees (both in front of and behind the scenes) deserve every penny of that and more!
    28 points
  4. twangster

    Test Cruise Invite

    Invitation Received Choice of Allure or Ovation.
    26 points
  5. I got an email invite for a test cruise on the Nigerian Prince. All I have to do is give them my bank account number and ssn
    25 points
  6. I'd never enter the belly flop contest.
    24 points
  7. Whew! Good point to not automatically freak out! Just read this in a Facebook group: Thought of the day, DO NOT PANIC! We are beginning to wind down our amazing cruise on Adventure of the Seas with Royal Caribbean. We departed from Nassau Bahamas on Saturday and have enjoyed a very relaxing time. One requirement of re-entry to the United States is a negative Covid test. Royal Caribbean International is currently offering this service to all passengers departing from the Bahamas. We took our tests this morning and went on about our day at sea heading to Freeport as our last port of call. The testing process was very simple by signing up via an email. We were in and out in under 8 minutes. Woohoo. Cocktail time with our favorite bartender in Schooner Lounge with some 90’s Trivia. A few minutes into trivia, some ship’s officers showed up and spoke to Tim for a moment and he said he was going to the cabin. I was a bit puzzled until another officer approached me. He said Tim’s Covid test was positive and he needed to go back to our quarters. I was simply blown the $&@) away! I dashed right up to the cabin. Tim confirmed what they said and we both were in shock. Here we are on a full day at sea, hundreds of miles from home, and totally freaking. 15 minutes later a guy from medical shows up to perform a PCR test, the one that takes a sample of your brain according to Tim. The phone rang while we were waiting. I answered and the voice on the other end said he was chief of security. I put Tim on and he walked him through some things on his phone to set up contract tracing. I’m still freaking that we are going to be confined to our cabin, or confined to medical. F$&@!!! OMG we are going to be on the news! I finally checked my email and my results were negative. Woohoo! I can make a mad dash to the bar for a cocktail before they can catch me. I wasn’t even told to stay in the room. I get to the bar and order drinks. A few minutes later Tim shows up. Omg, he broke out of jail. I just knew they would find him and make him walk the plank. Luckily the results of his PCR test came back NEGATIVE! What a sigh of relief. Moral of the story, stay calm and DO NOT PANIC! We can’t thank Royal Caribbean International for taking amazing care of us during an extremely emotional time. Loyal to Royal!
    20 points
  8. I come at this from a different angle, every penny I have I earn from painstakingly hard work and then careful decision making. I never consider having my finances in check/order as a privilege; I carefully choose how I spend what I have, for example I never cruised until in my 50's because I had other commitments at the time. When I see Star Class people I look at them with admiration, knowing one day I will either Royal Up win or book a Star Class when that experience is the most important thing to make me part with my monies. I look at their joy and I am so happy for that family and strive to be in that place someday. For example right now I have contracted an in ground pool Oasis in my backyard and the price tag is north of 100,000. No Star Class for me until that bill is firmly behind me, when I was young I saw what others had achieved and worked like crazy to get there, nowadays it seems this type of thinking has given way to a bit of the opposite. So when you are in Star Class & I am not but I smile & wave at you...I'm not being creepy I just think you are so cool & want that for myself in the future. Signed, @WAAAYTOOOfan club president!
    19 points
  9. Matt

    Removed from RCG

    This is no different than the lunatics who go nuts in airports when their flight is cancelled. Let's not give them any more attention.
    18 points
  10. Attend an art auction or buy a watch
    18 points
  11. Status Update: Thank you for registering for the Allure of the Seas® simulation voyage. We've reserved your stateroom and reservation numbers will be provided to you once manifested. A system generated invoice will automatically be sent to the email address on record. Please proceed with making your travel arrangements*. For more information, please reference your event info document. We also ask that you acknowledge the informed consent form that will be sent to each guest, as it is required prior to confirming your reservation. We can't wait to welcome you onboard Allure of the Seas!
    17 points
  12. I just wanted to make a quick post regarding comments/messages. As a Royal Caribbean crew member, I have strict rules to follow when it comes to social media. There are certain things I can and cannot talk about. This is why I don't respond to 95% of my comments, just in case I say something I'm not supposed to. I could potentially jeopardise my employment with the company by slipping up. I hope this makes sense. Please know that I read all of your comments and messages. Thank you for continuing to support me, and engaging with my content.
    17 points
  13. Can I just say how TIRED I am of the debate? Wear a mask, don’t wear a mask, vaccinate, don’t vaccinate. We aren’t convincing anyone to change their stance here. Can’t we talk about chair hogs and proper attire????
    16 points
  14. twangster

    Removed from RCG

    She also made the claim that Royal was out to get her and falsified the test to make it positive. Why would they do that? That's the very last outcome they want and they don't need a COVID test result to remove someone from a cruise. She had already violated the guest conduct policy at that point. That's all they need to remove her.
    15 points
  15. I’ll never sign up for an exercise class. Just. No.
    15 points
  16. Eat at a Guy’s Burger Joint because that would require me to get on a Carnival ship.
    15 points
  17. I'm impressed. I don't even know 19 people, much less have 19 family members, lol.
    15 points
  18. This is going to get reported for at least the next month or so and then hopefully will just not be interesting anymore. Bottom line: there are going to be cases. We’ve seen the protocols work exactly as planned for 2 cruises now. All the people freaking out (mostly on Facebook) really should just stay home. Those that are comfortable and believe in the protocols climb aboard.
    15 points
  19. Yes, as long as the ducks wore masks
    15 points
  20. A masked day on a cruise ship is better than an unmasked day at home
    14 points
  21. I have no issue with any Royal ship. Even those that recently left the fleet were good enough for me. However it really depends what you are seeking. I don't need zip lines and bumper cars to have a great cruise. I can have a great cruise with just the basic or core essentials - pool, buffet, hot tub, casino, theater, salt air, wind on my nearly hairless head. Some people are looking for the latest whiz bang and there is nothing wrong with that, that's what they seek. Just this week I booked the now oldest ships in the fleet because there are some stellar itineraries that the newer ships just don't do. If you seek more diverse itineraries then those older ships are perfect. Put me on a ship, any ship, and I'll have a great cruise. So it all depends on what you are seeking and what your expectations are.
    14 points
  22. Are the chairhogs in the vaccinated or unvaccinated area?
    14 points
  23. I don't know about that... this is what a $1,750 pair of jeans looks like these days.
    14 points
  24. So good to be back to reading the blog and regularly checking the topics for helpful information. I was a regular reader, until COVID, and then it was difficult to tune in as regularly. It is nice to be reading and planning upcoming cruises and seeing the many familiar contributors with well earned expertise!! I used to love reading your insights and am once again looking forward to it. Our first cruise isn't for 6 months but we have finally begun browsing the cruise planner and purchasing excursions and such. Anyone else feeling the "hopeful cruise vibes"?
    14 points
  25. Covid is never going away. You can continue to live in fear or grab life by the horns and go for it. I’m approaching 5 years cancer free from stage 4b endometrial cancer. I had a 15% chance of making it. I’m here and ready to cross off my bucket list cruises. I’m a firm believer that when it’s your time, it’s your time. I’ve stared down death. It wasn’t my time. Too bad more people don’t see life that way. No regrets baby! Hurry up October! Here I come Symphony!
    14 points
  26. twangster

    Test Cruise Invite

    Cabin assigned. Ocean View Balcony.
    13 points
  27. My title comes from my favorite show and the fact that we actually set sail on Halloween. My favorite holiday, which is weird because I don't like to be scared. I have been vacillating on whether I would do a live blog. I am not sure it will be so live because I am on vacation and I thought there are already enough. However, I had to remind myself that each person indeed a snowflake. While it may seem like there are enough blogs about the various offerings and ships; each experience has been different. So let's get it started in here...... As I write this, my cruise is 107 days away...... Ship and Date: Allure of the Seas Oct 31st-Nov 7th Departure and Ports: Port Canaveral...PHILIPSBURG, ST. MAARTEN.......CHARLOTTE AMALIE, ST. THOMAS........PERFECT DAY AT COCOCAY Cabin: GT-9644 Grand Suite - 2 Bedroom's...aka SKY CLASS People: Originally 3 and now 5; Me, my brother, my mother, our bff and his mother.....all over 30 Plans: 2 days at WDW, 2 Days at Universal, then 7 Night cruise Hotel: Floridays resort Orlando, 3 Bedroom suite Oct 24th-Oct 31st Cruise planner: Guacamole and Sushi classes x2, refreshment packagex1, Snorkel all day CocoCayx3 Intro: So I booked this cruise in Feb of 2020 on a whim. Got an incredible deal on this sky class suite. Then Covid happened and the 4 cruises I had planned before this were cancelled. I was afraid this one would fall through the cracks but thankfully it looks like a go! We were taking this cruise as a late birthday present to our mother. We decided to grant her wish of attending both theme parks. This had been my mother's dream vacation for as long as I could remember and as 2020 went on, we realized we should try to do all the things we love, when we can. So I planned theme parks visit before the cruise, we would definitely need to relax after battling both WDW and Universal. In late Aug 2020 bff's mother had a mild heart attack, coupled with Covid; thankfully she survived but we all lost people. That was a rough year for all and bff mentioned he wish he could afford to take his mom on vacation. As the vacation planner, I went to work. Having been on these boards and learning from some of the best, I found the perfect solution. At the time, Sept 20' it was $1400pp just to book an interior on Allure. This wasn't a bad price but they wouldn't be able to eat in CK, visit the lounge or enjoy the suite deck with us. I started a topic about possibly adding them to our suite as it holds 8. Thankfully, I was able to add them at the 3rd person rate of $859pp. Now came the hard part, telling my mother. She had met bff but never his mother, she was going to have to spend 2 weeks with her. I probably should have ran this by her before we said okay but I am a sucker for helping people live their best life. Thankfully they met and become best friends. So I guess I should start off by saying a few things. Most of the time I travel solo, I am fat, and normally a very bougie girl. That means at least a 4-star hotel and 1st class on domestic flights. I only get 3 weeks of vacation a year and prefer experiences over things. However, none of the rest of my travel party is like that. My brother would fly on top of a wheel if he could pay something like $5. It is not that he is cheap... it is that he is a gourmand and a nice whiskey drinker, so he would rather spend his money on that. The most expensive airline ticket he brought was to Osaka round trip at $627. Our bff and his mother have never taken a vacation...bff went on a business trip to Orlando and snuck in a day at the theme park once. We took (aka paid for everything) our mother to Italy in 2017 and that was her only vacation and first time flying. I said all that to say I lost the battle for a decent airline and class. .....we are flying Spirit airline. I flew them once because of an AA accident and definitely missed all the accoutrements I am used too. I have been told that while service is still bare-bones, they have gotten better. I am use to everything being included in flight price so it was weird to have to bundle up to get checked bags and a carry-on. I also upgraded so I can have what they consider their first class....a Big Seat. We have the first flight of the day, which means it should be on-time and thankfully we aren't flying in the day of the cruise. So none of them have ever been on RCG and 3 have never even been on a cruise. Both mothers are occasion drinkers aka they will have champagne on New years, maybe a glass of wine at fancy dinner. Outside of that they only drink sparkling water and sometimes juices. Brother and bff are heavy-ish drinkers, I like smoothies and stuff. I was on the phone with a rep and she wouldn't allow 3 refresh packages and 2 DBP. Tried another rep and was same answer. Tried the third time and rep was willing to reverse it, 3 at UBP and 2 at refreshment. Since the mother's don't really drink anything, even though they said yes, $29(w gratuity) a day was too much of an obligation for them. They would be forcing themselves to drink just to get monies worth. After a little back and forth we decided to just supplement the suite lounge a la cart. Leaving me with the only beverage package because I needs my frozen drinks and such. We originally had a 3 night dining package. My brother doesn't eat red meat, both mothers decided they were going to eat tons of junk at the theme park and lighter on the cruise. BFF is funny, he doesn't fool with "business" aka vegetables or anything frou frou. So we cancelled the 3 night dining package as 3/5 people at any given time didn't like the choices. My brother and bff are fans of sushi, so they are signed up for that class and the guacamole one as well. After showing some menus, we plan to eat at CK at least 5 nights. Try the Windjammer, if it is open during our sailing and do a la cart at whatever specialty restaurant floats our boat. I would prefer if we could take care of this beforehand but 5 adults, 5 different personalities. Right now we only have snorkeling at CocoCay as a paid excursion. We figured after the parks, the ship is our destination. As things progress I plan to update this blog. I expect a lot of food pictures....maybe a few of us if I feel like it. Thanks for reading TTFN
    13 points
  28. Ok, so it’s a week early but I’m starting while I’m thinking about it. Looking at the Adventure sitting in port getting ready to head off on its last sailing before mine doesn’t hurt either. I’ve lost track of how many cruises I’ve had canceled but earlier this year I booked the Grandeur for December thinking it might be my best chance to get on a ship next. Little did I expect to see the Adventure sailings announced (or just how fast things would start up from the US). Almost didn’t book since I’m not a fan of cruising in the summer, but after some internal fighting… YOLO. Was sorely tempted by the first week, but in the end decided that if I’m going to book something for the summer why not just spend my birthday on the ship with no responsibilities and a drink package? This cruise marks a couple of firsts for me, first time on a ship embarking outside of the US and the first time flying in the day of a cruise. The latter one worries me a bit…but I’m using Air2Sea and have the first flight out at 5am, connecting in Charlotte and landing in Nassau a little after 10am. Hopefully this gives me enough leeway for the inevitable delays. Worst case, I guess I’m swimming to Freeport and meeting the ship there. Fine, sure, they have flights into Freeport but what fun would that be. To be clear, I don’t recommend doing this! Life conspired against me making it my only option, how dare it give me exciting new opportunities. I started a new job a couple days ago and other obligations are keeping me away from home until Thursday. Figured it’d only be nice to give my new boss a few days of work before showing her where my real priorities lie. Oh, yeah, and give myself time to do things like pack, finalize moving plans, etc. What idiot thought it'd be a good idea to try and fit starting a new job, taking a vacation, and moving to a new city/state all into a month? Don't answer that. Ok, preamble done. If you made it this far you have my sympathies for how bored you must be. Let’s set some proper expectations, here’s a few of the things you can’t expect: quality, coherence, any sort of vague adherence to a schedule, good pictures, dressing in formal wear on formal night, and socks. To not leave you completely high and dry though you can absolutely expect: alcohol, plans to change on a whim, inebriated answers to questions, sometimes even the ones that are asked, and sandals. Feel free to google "tuxedo swimsuit", but I'm not sure I'm mean enough to inflict that sight on the other guests. Maybe just for a Christmas card photo. As of now I have few plans: Friday 7/9 - work, pack, check in to flight, stay at hotel airport. Saturday 7/10 - Flight to Nassau, mani-pedi, lots of beverages. Sunday 7/11 - Freeport - Drink, read, repeat Monday 7/12 - CocoCay - Beach Club Tuesday 7/13 - CocoCay - Beach Club and the Helium balloon Wednesday 7/14 - Sea Day - Sushi and Sake lunch Thursday 7/15 - Cozumel - Cozumel Bar Hop Friday 7/16 - Sea Day - Doing inappropriate things, or reading Saturday 7/17 - Sadness, depression, flight home. Maybe some beverages too. I’ve got the UDP, no idea what I’ll schedule for that. To be honest I could easily subsist on random rolls/sushi/sashimi from Izumi all week but I’ll likely do a night at Chops and Giovanni’s. Things left to do: Pack. I wonder how small of a bag I can use for this one… PCR test on Monday Verifly stuff Royal Health Questionnaire
    13 points
  29. Only in Canada eh? The government's guidance to keeping a safe distance is measured as: ✔ 2 arm lengths ✔ 0.5 Canoe ✔ 1 Fishing rod ✔ 1.5 Wakeboards That's right folks, make sure you stay 1/2 a canoe away from others. Is that a metric canoe or an imperial canoe? So confused.
    13 points
  30. BrianB

    Removed from RCG

    So long as there is a willing audience and an enabling media, these types of ‘horror’ stories will continue to appear. Unreasonable and self righteous personal drama created by agenda-driven malice. Deflect responsibility by completely ignoring the rules to which she agreed. Screaming loudly in an attempt to drown out her own culpability will not convince anyone of her being a victim. Except those looking for support of their own agenda. Sad.
    13 points
  31. twangster

    Volunteers of the Seas

    I am genuinely interested in helping the cruise lines succeed. Even to the point I would wear a mask on a test cruise. It's only 2 days (most of them in FL anyways) and it's not a cruise I'm paying for. I don't want to wear a mask on a cruise vacation I'm paying for that is 5 or more days, I've already posted to that effect. For a short test cruise that helps the industry? I'll gladly mask up and do my part. There is also a part of me that believes the CDC introduced test cruises to create a roadblock that cruise lines would have a hard time overcoming. It would be incredibly satisfying knowing I helped the cruise lines get past the CDC malarkey.
    13 points
  32. SpeedNoodles

    Mock Booking

    I just did a mock booking to see and had no problems. Actually, I did have a problem. I mock booked an AquaTheatre Suite on Symphony, and now I WANT IT TO BE REAL!!!!!
    13 points
  33. At first I thought about deleting the non post, but, after reading the comments, I think it's too valuable to get rid of.
    13 points
  34. twangster

    Test Cruise Invite

    I've pretty much decided that if this proceeds I'm not going to live blog it. There is too much riding on this for the cruise line. Posting an errant photo or comment could cause the CDC to pause or fail the simulation cruise. Once it's known the certificate to sail has been awarded I'll consider posting about the experience, assuming I am selected to go forward.
    12 points
  35. You mean like the masks that worked so well in Japan with a society that has a much higher mask compliance than the US? Japan, who is seeing a surge in Covid cases so much so that no spectators are now going to be allowed at olympics? The CDC just released their new school guidelines that are saying that unvaccinated children should wear masks. CDC continues to be a joke. There will always be new strains of viruses just look at seasonal flu. Covid is well in the way to being endemic. Mass testing needs to end just like they ended testing of H1N1 in 2009-2010. Caseademic at this point. The variants are now just more panic porn. The Delta variant is no more deadly than original despite what media pushes. I get that the US wants more people to get vaccinated but fear is not the way to accomplish it Royal needs to drop masking because masking is just theater at this point and their customers are going to continue to cancel cruises if they continue these masking protocols
    12 points
  36. I’d never book another nudist cruise.
    12 points
  37. If they aren’t paid a ‘living wage’ how can one be a crew member for so long? That snark comment aside, I recommend talking to a crew member about their weekly net cruise wages compared to the average weekly wages of their home country for a similar skill set job. I have been told by many crew that net cruise wages are 5-7 times their home country. This is why so many are eager to work on a ship and are so serious about maintaining their employment. Think of the sacrifices they make being away from home and often family. If you think that all crew should be paid what is considered a living wage in the U.S. the cruise fare would increase tremendously and thus less people able to afford cruise travel. This lowers demand for crew as less ships are needed. Thus leaving more people in impoverished countries on a waitlist dreaming for a cruise job, likely never getting one, enabling them to forever improve the opportunities for their family. I consider this scenario evil. My masters in economics likely influences my thinking. Consider the unseen when making economic suggestions.
    12 points
  38. Ultimately this has just demonstrated the complete futility of a legal/government system that has become so incredibly bloated that it is non functional. A government agency puts in place rules, that subsequently may not have been legal but nonetheless shut down an industry for over a year ... A state government sued said agency asking for an "emergency injunction" ... months later we are still waiting on the endless waffling to end ... Meanwhile the original emergency that is the basis for the whole thing basically ended and yet the legal battles are still endlessly winding along ... And there is confusion over why people have increasingly no trust in politicians and lawyers (and the press for making this into a nightmare with conflicting over blown stories).
    12 points
  39. WAAAYTOOO

    REFUND - HOORAY

    Great news since this was your desire but sorry that I won’t get a chance to meet you. We unvaxxed have to stick together. Oh wait….that’s what the vaxxed are afraid of, isn’t it ?
    12 points
  40. I've seen a couple instances where people ignore the red seat covers with "RESERVED" in large letters at a show. Then the Genie comes along and tells they have to move. At this point they freak out and claim all sorts of things. Some slink away quietly knowing they got busted, some have a full Karen moment even in the pre-Karen days. Naturally they rant about Star Class but it's their own stupidity on display. Lots of people do the same with the reserved rows for Sky Class. They see empty prime seating and decide to go for it only to be blocked by a crew member. Then the whining begins. I feel bad for the crew who have to police it, they've heard the same old rant every show, every cruise. When I had the Key one time there were two us at the Flowrider during the hour reserved for Key members. We just went again and again after each other. Other non-Key guests were giving us the stink eye. Too. Friggin. Bad. Don't like it? Buy it. Their ship, their rules. Don't ever feel bad using the perks you paid for.
    12 points
  41. Sharla

    Benefits of TA?

    The benefit to booking with a travel agent is that you have an advocate in your corner to help you plan your trip. This means: - You have someone to continue to look for and apply discounts should any be released (which is very often with RCI), so that you do not have to spend time doing the same, or potentially missing a better offer. - You have someone to help you navigate the Cruise Planner program. - You have someone to help you make your dining reservations if you'd like. - You have an expert in all things cruising and travel to help you plan the best vacation you can. - You have someone you can come to directly to ask questions to instead of spending time looking around on the internet for your answers. - You have someone to turn to should something go wrong while you are traveling. And the best part is, we provide all of this for FREE to you. You get our concierge level service at no extra charge. The difference when you book with me is the difference between information and expertise. Anyone can look up information on the internet. When booking your trip with me you know you have an expert in your corner that can help tailor your trip to your desires and make sure you see everything you want to do!
    12 points
  42. It's like you've never even READ me... @Patta_Conna, big congratulations on winning that. I'm betting though that now you're both spoiled and can never sail anything less than SC ever again. That's what @WAAAYTOOO and @Lovetocruise2002 and all the other SC addicts say, anyway....
    11 points
  43. It’s just a mask… its just 2 weeks… it’s just 15 days to slow the spread.. its just shutting down children’s playgrounds to protect them.. its just closing beaches… its just a 5 year old wearing a mask all day in school… its just having children at summer camps in extreme temps required to wear masks.. it’s just suspending elective surgeries at hospitals for a Covid surge that didn’t happen… its just an increased rate in suicides among young people because of isolation… I’m sorry but it is a big deal when the CDC and our government has been so wrong so often about Covid and Covid protocols/lockdowns over the last year Hopefully we learn from the past and seriously evaluate the mitigation methods taken against Covid and not repeat these same mistakes moving forward and this includes the cruise lines and masking. After July 18 when the CSO is no longer enforceable, masks should not be required on cruise ships. Cause guess what, even with masks, Covid cases will happen.
    11 points
  44. This is not technically and on the ship thing, but I will never do a ‘resort for a day’ excursion. You leave the ship where you have a pool, free flow drinks (if you’re like me), all inclusive food and great service to pay to go to another place that has……a pool, free flow alcohol, all inclusive food, and great service. I just don’t get it! It seems like you are paying for something the ship already provides. Sure, sometimes there is a beach involved, but surely you can go to beaches without this pay charge. And if you don’t like beaches then why not just stay on the ship? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
    11 points
  45. CDC just got benchslapped.
    11 points
  46. Or is the finish line continually being extended because the race organizers don't want the race to end?
    11 points
  47. Pooch

    To Jr suite or not?

    Ok yes I am officially a Suite Snob. I blame my husband and several bad influence posters here!!
    11 points
  48. After reading multiple posts about SC suites, we booked the Ultimate family suite on Symphony for 10/29/22. It’s cheaper than a Disney suite and seems like you get so much more perks. the kids are super excited about the slide and the hot tub. @Sharla made it very easy. Thank you all for great advices.
    11 points
  49. teddy

    Removed from RCG

    I'm not going to watch that video based on her picture in the You Tube link. It reminds me of every customer who had to tell us why they wouldn't wear a mask while grocery shopping during the pandemic.
    10 points
  50. Jill

    Star Class Hostility?

    This whole hostility thing is just a mirror of today’s society unfortunately. Why can’t people just be happy?
    10 points
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